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Actor on trial for sex offences
Coronation Street actor Michael Le Vell is to go on trial accused of a series of serious child sex offences.
The star, who plays car mechanic Kevin Webster in the ITV soap, is facing 12 charges in all, which are five counts of rape, three of indecent assault, two counts of sexual activity with a child and two of causing a child to engage in sexual activity.
The alleged offences relate to one complainant and are said to have taken place between September 2002 and September 2010. The law protects complainants in sexual offence cases and they cannot be named.
Le Vell, 48, who lives in Hale, Cheshire, is charged under his real name of Michael Turner. He denies all charges.
The father of two, originally from Manchester, is one of TV's most famous faces after playing garage owner and mechanic Kevin Webster for the past 30 years.
At previous hearings the actor has arrived at court with his legal team and a minder amid a large gathering of photographers, reporters and TV crews.
Le Vell began his showbusiness career at the Oldham Theatre Workshop after taking an interest in amateur dramatics while at school.
He first joined Coronation Street in 1983 and quickly endeared himself to fans, who have followed the trials and tribulations of Kevin, from Brian Tilsley's apprentice mechanic through to his stormy marriage to Sally, played by Sally Dynevor, and fathering two girls, Rosie and Sophie. The actor split from his wife, Janette Beverley, last year.
ITV has said he will not be appearing in any further episodes of the soap pending the outcome of legal proceedings.
His trial before Judge Michael Henshell at Manchester Crown Court is scheduled to last around two weeks.